Dear all, I have been doing some soul searching of late. Although, understanding Quran via its language is my passion. Since it is an established fact that Quranic language is only present in written form and is lost as a spoken language. To put it simply the language of Quran is not the same as modern spoken Arabic. Hence, it is futile to just learn spoken language in order to understand Quran.
However, since the language of Quran is only preserved in archives that is to say in lexicons and dictionaries. Most of the words have multiple meanings in lexicons and dictionaries. Hence, a rationale and logical question is how could one know and decide in present day and age? What meanings were the intended meanings of a given word by original authors? The authors are long gone and the language is no more spoken language. A real challenge, isn’t it?
Hence, once again, I felt to be in darkness. One can fool all, but can’t fool oneself, or shouldn’t try it. Unless, I could come up with rationale answer there was not even a point in continuing to translate. Hence, I asked myself, what is it that helps me to decide one meanings of a word over others?
The only rationale answer was the total frame of reference and the big picture painted by Quran. What does it mean for a common person?
There are three most frequently used words in Quran. If one understands these well. Their meanings help to decided appropriate meanings of any given word over other given meanings.
These three words with their meanings are
1. Allah, used 2851 times meaning “one who doesn’t engage in worship”
2.Rabb, used 981 times meaning “Sustainer, maintainer, accomplisher and foster”. For simplicity sake all these concepts can be expressed in English by one word “Foundation”.
3.Ilm, used 854 times meaning “to know truly or certainly from inference”.
All these three words are explained right at the beginning.
1.الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ رَبِّ الْعَالَمِينَ
"The admiration for one who doesn’t engage in worship is to be the foundation for all disciplines of knowledge".
Now this is the big picture or frame of reference of Quran. This helps me to decide out of multiple meanings from archives. Please keep these meanings in your fore-view while reading following translation. It shall make it easy to understand.
Surah : 94 - Al-Sharh
94:1 أَلَمْ نَشْرَحْ لَكَ صَدْرَكَ
Haven’t we given a complete explanation about maintaining yourself at a minimum level?
94:2 وَوَضَعْنَا عَنكَ وِزْرَكَ
We assigned you to bear this burden and you turned away!
94:3 الَّذِي أَنقَضَ ظَهْرَكَ
Which is because it appeared contradictory to you apparently?
94:4 وَرَفَعْنَا لَكَ ذِكْرَكَ
We wish you to be elevated in your nobility and honor.
94:5 فَإِنَّ مَعَ الْعُسْرِ يُسْرًا
Then for sure it shall lead to an ease that is preceded with the difficulty.
94:6 إِنَّ مَعَ الْعُسْرِ يُسْرًا
For sure any ease is preceded with the difficulty.
94:7 فَإِذَا فَرَغْتَ فَانصَبْ
Therefore, whenever you are unoccupied then you shall continue to strive.
94: 8 وَإِلَى رَبِّكَ فَارْغَبْ
This leads you towards your foundation (Rabb); hence you shall absolutely desire it.